Chateau de Montespan

The origins of the name of Montespan comes from the Mont d’Espagne, after the name of the family living here up until the XVth century. The seigneurs of the family d’Espagne first began living here during the XIIIth century, when the fortress held a garrison of 50 men situated an important position guarding the border against Spain.
In 1926 it is listed as monuments historiques.

blason-montespan

The commune becomes owners of the chateau sat in a state of ruin in 1995.
In 1235, Grise d’Espagne, the daughter of Arnaud d’Espagne, Lord of Montespan, marries Roger de Comminges, Viscount of Couserans.
The first residential occupation dates from the 13th century, between 1308 and 1311 with the construction of an enclosure to protect the tower. The House d’Espagne-Montespan transformed the chateau and arranged it accordingly: the previous dwellings of the Lord, the tower and the chapel were demolished.

Montespan in the 14th century the chateau, which occupied a strategic position, ensuring the security of the passages of the Couserans to Spain. Beyond their role as “Guardians of the Borders”, the Barons of Spain provided the crown of France with a line of valiant warriors and great ecclesiastical and civil dignitaries.

In the 14th century, this family appeared in the first ranks of the Pyrénéenne  nobility and led a lavish lifestyle. They left the now dilapidated residence of Montespan and decided to emigrate to the Chateau d’Ausson, which was more comfortable.

In 1555, with Roger IV, who died without a legitimate child, extinguished the first lineage of the House of the Barons d’Espagne-Montespan. By the marriage of Paule d’Espagne, eldest sister of Roger IV, with Antoine de Pardaillan de Gondrin, the Barony d’Espagne-Montespan entered with the house of Pardaillan de Gondrin.

In 1612, the lands of the barony were erected in Marquisate by Louis XIII.

montespan-1960

a view of the ruins in 1960, source geoportail

In 1663, Louis-Henri de Pardailhan-Gondrin, Marquis de Montespan, married Françoise Athénaïs de Rochechouart-Mortemart (b.5 octobre 1640 at the Chateau de Lussac-les-Châteaux (86).
The wedding ceremony took place in a chapel at the Église Saint-Eustache in Paris. Françoise later recounted that as she had neglected to bring along the proper kneeling cushions for the ceremony, the couple had to kneel on dog cushions. She became the Marquise of (or Madam) Montespan, and made the name and village famous by becoming the favourite of Louis XIV, boasted to be his favourite place in the Pyrenees. She was born into one of the oldest noble families of France, the House of Rochechouart, Madame de Montespan was called by some the true Queen of France, Having 8 children with the king, she loses her title of Madam de Montespan in 1683, no longer in royal favour, She decides to move to Paris in 1691 where she began living in the Convent Saint-Joseph until her death in 1707 at the aged of 66, Louis Henri Pardailhan-Gondrin, Marquis de Montespan dies 1st December 1691 at the age of 51 years.

Daughter of Mme de Montespan and Louis -Henri, Marie-Christine de Pardaillan de Gondrin de Montespan, born in 1663. died in Toulouse believed whilst she was in boarding school on April 5, 1675 aged just 12.

Daughter of Mme de Montespan and King Louis XIVth, Louise-Françoise de Montespan (1669-1672)

Louis-Antoine de Gondrin de Pardaillan de Montespan (1665-1736) Son of Louis Henri and Francois Athenais, Marquis of Antin, Gondrin and Montespan (1701),  1st duc d’Antin (1711) born and died in Paris, Director of Buildings of the King (1708-1736), Another rumor about the death of Madame de Montespan, which also relates squarely to the Duc d’Antin is that he stole the will and testament of his mother by which she bequeathed her property to all her children and to various good works (hospitals and charities). In the absence of a will, he was the sole heir, the other children having no legal claim.